The Last Countdown

Originally published on Monday, September 27, 2010, 9:16 pm in German at

Three Months of Spring

After all the many pages I could read on the Internet, on various websites and in our Bible Commentary, I noticed that apparently nobody had ever considered the possibility that the Passover could have fallen in May of AD 31. Spring always lasts three months and not just two, right?

So why not? All the “scholars” always assume that Passover can only be in March or April, but is that really so? Before I will analyze this issue in depth, let’s calculate what would have happened if the Passover in AD 31 had been determined according to the FC moon of May, OK?

Redshift and Accurate Times tell us that the new moon of May AD 31 fell upon the 10th.

Now, let’s look together for the first crescent, first on the 10th of May:

Moon Visibility 31 05 10

No, it wasn’t visible; blue!

Now the 11th of May, AD 31:

Moon Visibility 31 05 11

Yes, we found it! Israel is covered with green. This was the sunset of Friday, May 11 to Saturday, May 12.

So, Nissan 1 would have fallen on Saturday, May 12, AD 31, and Nissan 14 would have been (12 + 13) May 25, AD 31.

Now we check the weekday calculator again to see what date and especially what weekday the crucifixion of Christ would have taken place on:

Friday, May 25, A.D. 31

Too good to be true?

Unfortunately, all five previously established methods exclude May as a potential crucifixion month. On the opponent’s website that the Karaites link to, we find an unwanted hint. They attack us there because they estimate October 22, 1844 as being scheduled too late and say that this would have necessitated a Passover in May 1844. And without further justification, they simply rule out May.

Let’s check when the Passover would have been in 1844 according to astronomical calculations if our October 22 is correct:

On a lunar calendar, we look for the new moon of the first month (Nissan) that corresponds to October (seventh month, Tishri). It was April 17, 1844 at 18:32 hours local time in Jerusalem.

Now let’s look for the corresponding FC moon of the first month:

We try April 17, 1844:

Moon Visibility 1844 04 17

No, then April 18, 1844:

Moon Visibility 1844 04 18

Still not found! Then we look at April 19, 1844:

Moon Visibility 1844 04 19

Yes, here it is. Nissan 1 would have been April 20, 1844.

The weekday calculator leads us to a Passover on Friday (!), May 3, 1844 .

The whole of Adventism is thus built upon a very late Passover festival in May, and in 166 years no one ever had the idea to check May of AD 31 to see if the crucifixion could have fallen on a Friday?

No, that’s not quite so; there was ONE who actually did it like this!

That was none other than our pioneer Samuel P. Snow, the Adventist who was the first to correctly calculate our 22nd of October 1844 and preached this date everywhere. He was a student of Miller, thus later being the originator of the “Movement of the Seventh Month” in summer 1844, which we understand as the message of the second angel.

He wrote in 1845 how he was able to show that Jesus was crucified in AD 31 in May:

But let us see if it was not in A. D. 31. In the first place let us understand and remember, that the Passover was always either, on the day in which the moon came to the full, or the day following. ...

We find also, that in A. D. 33, the full moon was on the 3rd day of April. From one full moon to another are about 29.5 days. The Karaite Passover in that year would be on the 3rd day of May. As the lunar months fall behind the solar 11 days every year, so, in reckoning backward from A. D. 33 to A.D. 31, there must be an addition of 11 days to each year, making, for the two years 22 days. We see then, that as in A.D. 33, the full moon was on the 3d of May, it must have occurred on the 25th of May in A. D. 31. The true Passover day must therefore have been either the 25th or 26th of May in that year.

Now our “October 22, 1844” pioneer consults a table from another author in order to calculate the weekday and promptly commits a small tracking mistake because this table already contained a little error:

Again, in the Appendix to Townsend´s arrangement of the New Testament will be found a very accurate table, exhibiting the time of the occurrence of the passover (according to the Rabbinical Jews,) during our Saviour´s life. In that table it is placed for A.D. 31, Tuesday, April 25th. Assuming this as undoubtedly correct, we shall find that 29.5 days which make a lunar month, extend to Thursday, May 25th.

Nowadays we know—and you can verify this with many programs—that April 25, AD 31 was not Tuesday but Wednesday and May 25 was not Thursday but the desired Friday already. Snow had already found the correct date, but because of the table error mistakenly believed that it was a Thursday. Since Snow wanted to come to a Friday, he had to find an explanation that the Passover that he had perfectly calculated took place precisely one day later, not on Thursday but on Friday, which he supposed to be the 26th of May:

And as there is a small excess over 29.5 days in a lunar month, and also over 11 days to a year in the precession of the moon´s changes, it came to the full in the latter part of the day. Consequently the passover was on the day following, which was Friday. We come then, to this conclusion, that our Lord was crucified, on Friday, May 26th, A. D. 31.

You can read all this in a document on the scribd platform, pages 186 and 187.

The author of this document where I found the quote of Snow is an advocate of a particular view of the course of events of AD 31 that we will analyze later in the second part of the shadow series, but his comment, added to the statements of Samuel Snow, contains some truth; he writes:

There are several mistakes in his [Snow’s] statements, because he was relying on wrong data. He did not have the resources we have today. For example, April 25th is Wednesday and May 26th is Saturday. Probably he [Snow] came to a wrong conclusion on account of this.

No, the conclusions of Snow were perfectly right, and he not only found the exact day of the beginning of the investigative judgment in 1844, but he was also the first to know the exact date of the crucifixion of Jesus. Unfortunately, he was mistaken by just one single day because of a table bug. This is really excusable, taking into account the resources of that age. If his table had been right, he would have come to the same conclusion that we do, namely that Jesus was crucified on the following date:

Friday, May 25, A.D. 31

Now it’s very likely that this knowledge is making our “Jerushah” sweat, as well as the lunar Sabbath keepers, since Samuel Snow’s voice weighs more than the voice of John Scotram.

Which calendar was used by Snow?

Many believe that Snow calculated using the Karaite calendar, because he mentions it. However, on their website, the Karaites themselves fervently deny that the Adventists used the Karaite calendar.

Where does this new confusion come from? It is because the Karaites themselves made another calendar reform in 1860. Previously, they almost always observed the Passover a month later than the Rabbinic Jews, and from 1860 they started to have the same Passover, which means one month early. The Karaites today do not determine the beginning of the year how the Karaites did before 1860!

Let’s try to understand that Snow, we, and the Karaites all have the same goal. We want to understand the calendar again like it was understood by biblical Israel. However, we have the huge problem that this knowledge is lost, and the Bible does not tell us precisely when the Jewish year began. God speaks only about the month of “Abib” and that means ripeness. He does not even say what fruit or grain should be ripe. The Karaites assume it is barley because it is the first cereal grain to ripen in the year. And since 1860 the Karaites assume it correct to look for the barley at the new moon in March already, even if it takes place before the vernal equinox. Why did the Karaite Jews before 1860 observe the Passover a month later than the Rabbinic Jews?

Many assumptions and questions, but nobody knows for sure. But now, with our knowledge of the true day of the crucifixion of the Lord, let’s try to find out how the true calendar of God worked.

Because of our considerations and calculations, it is unreasonable to assume that the old Jewish calendar was based on astronomical new moons. We can therefore certainly exclude methods 1 and 2.

What remains are the methods with the FC moon closest to the vernal equinox, the FC moon after the vernal equinox, and the Karaite solution. (But which one? The method before or after 1860?)

I would suggest examining how we could get to May 25, AD 31, and thus combine the different methods and document the results.

Method 3 had brought us to Wednesday, March 14, AD 31 as Nissan 1 by the FC moon that was closest to the vernal equinox. This led to a Passover on Tuesday, March 27, AD 31. If we combine method 3 and method 5, the Karaite investigation as to whether ripe barley actually could be found in the fields before March 14 (which would be far too early); we would come up to the next month at most, and therefore to the Passover date we calculated in method 4. That was Wednesday, April 25, AD 31. Thus, it is impossible to reach May 25, AD 31 combining method 3 and Karaite method 5.

The combination of method 3 and method 4 is impossible because they are mutually exclusive.

We now combine method 4 and method 5 from the Karaites. The first FC moon after the vernal equinox was visible at sunset on April 11, and thus, Nissan 1 fell upon April 12, AD 31. The corresponding Passover would have fallen as before upon April 25, AD 31. But now let’s assume that the Jews did the Karaite barley check and could not find ripe barley before April 12. Then April would have been excluded as the beginning of the year and a 13th month would have been included. Just before the next new moon, they would have repeated their barley search. The corresponding FC moon would have been visible at sunset on May 11 and this led us exactly to our date of the crucifixion on Friday, May 25, AD 31.

We can therefore state that according to our previous findings, method 1, method 2 and method 3 are completely ruled out. What led to the correct result was a combination of the FC moon after the vernal equinox and the Karaite barley harvest search to determine whether a 13th month had to be kept or not.

This corresponds to the combination of the views of large groups of scholars, because many see clearly that the Jews introduced the Hillel II calendar centuries later and most likely previously used the FC moon after the vernal equinox. What they lack, however, is the Karaite barley harvest search, and hence this big group is also partly right. The solution lies not in a method that I would have invented by my own imagination but has its foundation in the combination of two major doctrines.

Are there any other clues that this is true?

Yes, one we find through reflection, one is given to us by Jesus in the Bible, and there is a marvelous confirmation through dreams that Jesus gives to a man who cannot interpret those dreams.

1. Through Reflection

Let's put ourselves back to the time when God gave to Moses the instructions for keeping the feasts. That was at the beginning of the wandering in the wilderness after the exodus from Egypt.

Now ask yourselves the question of how the Israelites could have determined their new year in the desert for 40 years where they lived on manna, had no barley, and operated no agriculture. There were no watches, no computers, nor could you call the telephone company’s time service. Difficult, isn’t it?

According to our previous findings of how the true biblical calendar really worked, the hardest task for the Israelites at that time would have been the determination of the spring equinox. Could they do that?

This question can most likely be answered with a resounding “yes”. They were slaves for 215 years in a land of people with a culture that understood a lot about solar observation because of their religion of sun worship, and the Israelites had a leader, Moses, who had received an excellent education in all these things in Pharaoh’s palace.

The determination of the equinox could have been done theoretically in two ways.

a) By measurements with the hourglass. Since the Egyptians were the inventors of the hourglass, as commonly believed, it is very probable that the Israelites requested some of these valuable hourglasses with all the other “gifts” from their Egyptian lords before they fled from Egypt. So, when the days lengthened again, one needed only to measure the length of the day and the length of the night with the hourglass; and if there were an equal number of hourglass turns, the equinox was reached.

b) By measuring shadows. In Egypt, obelisks were common, as large shadow pointers of sundials. The equinox can easily be determined by the length of the noon shadow. Of course, you need not to have an obelisk at hand to do it; any vertically erected pole does the same job if you know the relation between the length of the shadow at equinox relative to the length of the pole.

Thus, when the equinox was reached, all they had to do is look out for the next crescent, and that would be the beginning of the first month, Nissan.

Now let’s cross-check our reflection

How would it have worked for the Israelites to follow the calendar with the FC moon nearest the vernal equinox? How should they have determined, without astronomical calculation tools, whether a FC moon that appeared before the equinox would be closer to it, if they could not determine which day the equinox would fall upon beforehand? Impossible!

For us today this is no problem, but at that time, in the wilderness, it was impossible. For that reason alone, we can almost certainly rule out method 3 being used in ancient Israel during their wilderness wandering, which in turn blends with the information from historians that this method was introduced by Rabbi Hillel recently, in the 4th century A.D., when they already had far more developed astronomical calculation methods than 1500 years before Christ.

That is why the true biblical calendar is not based on the rule of the FC moon closest to the vernal equinox, but of that which comes after the spring equinox, or falls upon it.

But what about the barley harvest search?

Let’s read the instruction the Lord gave to Moses in the desert once more, carefully:

Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When ye be come into the land which I give unto you, and shall reap the harvest thereof, then ye shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest unto the priest: And he shall wave the sheaf before the LORD, to be accepted for you: on the morrow after the sabbath the priest shall wave it. (Leviticus 23:10,11)

Here we can clearly understand that the 13th month based on the barley harvest (abib) was not introduced before the Israelites came to Canaan under Joshua (see Joshua, Chapter 5), even if the calendar was already explained in its entirety to Moses 40 years earlier.

We must imagine that in the 215 years of slavery the Israelites had forgotten everything that they formerly knew about their calendar. They had completely adopted the culture of the Egyptians, whose days began in the morning at sunrise instead of sunset, and who determined their year, and also their months, in a completely different way. Therefore, God led the Israelites back to the true divine calendar gradually. First, he told them again what the correct beginning of the day is. Then came the Sabbath and the day of preparation. Then—as we learned now—the beginning of the year with the vernal equinox. And 40 years later, the barley harvest test when they were already living in the Promised Land.

We can find something similar from the time of Ellen G. White to today. First, Joseph Bates recognized the Sabbath and explained it to Ellen G. White and her husband James, who then began to keep the Sabbath in 1846. That is an important date which is even noted in Orion (by the star of the white horse). However, they began their Sabbath at 18:00 hours like Joseph Bates. It had not yet been discovered that the beginning of the day was at evening at sunset. That was to be discovered in the Bible 16 years later, and then it was confirmed by Ellen G. White in a vision. Today, we are starting anew to understand the complete, true biblical calendar because we will very soon enter Canaan again, this time the real heavenly one.

But what is the real reason why we have just right now learned to understand the true biblical calendar on the exact date of Jesus’ crucifixion? What does Jesus want to say to us?

Is this—as the lunar Sabbath keepers claim—the threat that Benedict XVI could introduce a new world calendar, perhaps in 2012, which would then change the daily cycle from year to year for the first time in world history, and thus move our seventh-day Sabbath forward each year (or every six months in leap years) to a different day of the week? Would we not be able to count from one to seven anymore? Would we then have to change to the observation of the FC moon to know the real Sabbaths? And how would we know when the crescent was visible in Jerusalem, if all our Internet lines are shut down because we cannot buy or sell anymore?

I’ll provide you with a little “survival table” for true seventh-day Adventists, lest you switch to lunar observation which would automatically lead to the wrong Sabbath. This small table can be learned by heart, and you would be prepared for the next 5 years. Or you can just remember that in leap years the weekday advances by one after the leap day of June 30, and in every year the weekday advances by one on “World Day”, December 30. In any case, this is better than the observation of the moon determining your Sabbath for every month on the wrong day. By the way, what would the lunar Sabbath keepers do if they were thrown into prison and could not observe the moon? You just have to think about it to realize that this is all pure nonsense.

“Survival Table” for true Seventh-day Adventists, in case of enforcement of the “Benedictine Calendar” in 2012:

Benedictine DateWeekday of the true Sabbath
until June 30, 2012Saturday like usual
from July 1, 2012Friday
from January 1, 2013Thursday
from January 1, 2014Wednesday
from January 1, 2015Tuesday

The true reason why Jesus allows us to be confronted so heavily with these issues right now, and that Satan is allowed to start such a major attack on us by the “Sabbath Reform” of the lunar Sabbath keepers that you almost get sick just hearing about “feast studies”, is that in the biblical feast days, Jesus sealed a wonderful message for us for the last days that He would like to show us right now. He wants us to ponder these issues and therefore permits the heat under our melting pot to be increased a little.

Satan is determined to prevent us from getting to know the true meaning of the ceremonial sabbaths. He hauls out the big guns in form of the lunar Sabbath doctrine and wants us away from recognizing the message of Jesus. This dawned on me during this study. The true explanation of the biblical calendar can continue to remain hidden from the eyes of the Seventh-day Adventists only if Satan gives an incorrect explanation for the renewed understanding.

The bad and sad thing is that those Adventists who think they are firmly rooted in the true seventh-day Sabbath are pushing aside these issues and simply check off the subject entirely. Therefore they miss the message from Jesus, because they do not want to deal with these issues. As we shall see in the third part, the message is indeed vital for us as God’s people.

Please, reconsider the words of Ellen G. White in the introduction to the shadow series:

The significance of the Jewish economy is not yet fully comprehended. Truths vast and profound are shadowed forth in its rites and symbols. The gospel is the key that unlocks its mysteries. Through a knowledge of the plan of redemption, its truths are opened to the understanding. Far more than we do, it is our privilege to understand these wonderful themes. We are to comprehend the deep things of God. Angels desire to look into the truths that are revealed to the people who with contrite hearts are searching the word of God, and praying for greater lengths and breadths and depths and heights of the knowledge which He alone can give.” {COL 133.1}

2. Through Jesus and the Fig Tree

In our examination of whether there are other indications that the biblical calendar at the time of Jesus was still in use as it was given to Moses by Jesus Himself, it is now time to give the word to our Lord Himself. As you’ll see, He gives us in the Bible a wonderful answer to the long-sought question of which month He went to the cross.

Now in the morning as he returned into the city, he hungered. And when he saw a fig tree in the way, he came to it, and found nothing thereon, but leaves only, and said unto it, Let no fruit grow on thee henceforward for ever. And presently the fig tree withered away. And when the disciples saw it, they marvelled, saying, How soon is the fig tree withered away! (Matthew 21:18-20)

We are told when this event took place, chronologically, at the beginning of Chapter 21 of Matthew:

And when they drew nigh unto Jerusalem, and were come to Bethphage, unto the mount of Olives, then sent Jesus two disciples, Saying unto them, Go into the village over against you, and straightway ye shall find an ass tied, and a colt with her: loose them, and bring them unto me. (Matthew 21:1,2)

We are already in the week of the crucifixion. The chapter began with Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem on the Sunday before the crucifixion. Mark gives us some more detail about the event itself:

And on the morrow, when they were come from Bethany, he was hungry:  And seeing a fig tree afar off having leaves, he came, if haply he might find any thing thereon: and when he came to it, he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet. And Jesus answered and said unto it, No man eat fruit of thee hereafter for ever. And his disciples heard it. And they come to Jerusalem: and Jesus went into the temple, and began to cast out them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves; And would not suffer that any man should carry any vessel through the temple. And he taught, saying unto them, Is it not written, My house shall be called of all nations the house of prayer? but ye have made it a den of thieves. And the scribes and chief priests heard it, and sought how they might destroy him: for they feared him, because all the people was astonished at his doctrine. And when even was come, he went out of the city. And in the morning, as they passed by, they saw the fig tree dried up from the roots. And Peter calling to remembrance saith unto him, Master, behold, the fig tree which thou cursedst is withered away. And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God. (Mark 11:12-22)

Mark tells us in detail that Jesus cursed the fig tree on Monday after His glorious entry into Jerusalem, and on Tuesday it had already withered. We all know that Jesus wanted to give a parable to show the condition of His people, the Jewish nation. They had many leaves (were ostentatious), but they brought no good fruit. Therefore, their candlestick would soon be removed.

But so far, apparently no one has come up with the idea of reading even more carefully to discover another message in these verses that reveals to us exactly which month the crucifixion week took place in.

After a life as a computer engineer, five years ago I became a farmer in South America because I followed the call of Ellen G. White in obeying God to live a simple life in the countryside and bring the gospel to the surrounding population. I had to learn many things. There have been terrible disappointments on the way to recognizing that there is no more intact nature, and that it has become almost impossible to operate a small agricultural project today without a million-dollar investment, just to support one’s own family. The life of a small-scale farmer can be very difficult. When I bought my little piece of land with lots of rocks in a mountainous area, because I was convinced after a lot of prayer that in a miraculous manner God had shown me this land with a deep drilled well and a beautiful mountain creek, I did not have any idea how many tests I would have to go through. On the day of the purchase of the land it was still raining so strong that the creek had swelled into a small river and the cargo area of the former owner’s pickup was filled to the brim with rain water in minutes. I did not know of such heavy rain in Germany.

I was told that the creek had never dried up in the last 35 years, and after this downpour it was easy to believe. Later, I would meet my present wife, a neighbor’s daughter of the first family that I could evangelize, and she always told me that this creek was actually always a river, where you could catch fish weighing up to a few pounds. Then began the worst drought that one can imagine. It stopped raining in 2005 about 3 months after I had bought the land and had settled there to some extent. Despite all my prayers, it did not rain significantly for a biblical three and a half years, and I had to learn what drought means. Tears, loss, suffering—and to see how everything dies around you. First, the “never drying up river” dried up completely. Then my beloved fruit trees, which I had bought in the hundreds with my land, started to wither away.

We watered from the deep well, bought a higher capacity motor pump, but we could not save all the trees in those years. Many have been lost. From not too far away, we heard the cows of the neighbors crying of thirst, because no one here has a well like we have. But although I offered our water to the neighbors, they did not want to bring their cows to our farm because the nearby Catholic Church had announced that no one should approach us, calling us Satanists. After several months, there was silence. The cattle of the neighbors had died. Only our few lean cows, which I had acquired with the land, were still alive because we had water and because I was able to buy cattle feed from other regions with my resources, which was impossible for the comparatively poor people around us.

The worst struggle for us, however, was the fight for the survival of our many citrus, mango, papaya, and guava trees. When real rain fell again after three and a half years, I had learned to observe a tree to tell whether it will survive or wither away, and I learned also to examine whether a tree will bear fruit, and if there will be many or just a few. It is actually quite simple, but for a former desk jockey like me it was all new.

I learned that there were years in which we could expect only a few fruits and years in which there was plenty of fruit. It mainly depends on the amount of rain, but also on the age of a tree and other factors, such as the altitude of the land. Since we are located about 100 m higher than our surroundings, everything ripens here a little later. But we also have fruits until later in the year. Just 100 m can already make a difference of up to one month in maturity.

We do not have figs here, so I had to read about the fig tree on the Internet. I learned, to my astonishment, that fig trees, in contrast to most other trees, develop their buds and fruit before the foliage. Thus, once a fig tree has leaves, it is expected to also be bearing fruit.

Jesus had inspected the tree and examined it for fruit because He was hungry. Mark tells us that the time for figs was not yet. The time for figs in Israel is “end of May to early October” (see Israel – Plants in German).

Most scholars take Mark 11:13 as a reason to exclude it from being the end of May when the Lord was crucified because it would have been already the time for figs. But Ellen G. White, who was it all in vision, tells us the following:

The entire night Jesus spent in prayer, and in the morning He came again to the temple. On the way He passed a fig orchard. He was hungry, “and seeing a fig tree afar off having leaves, He came, if haply He might find anything thereon: and when He came to it, He found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet.”

It was not the season for ripe figs, except in certain localities ; and on the highlands about Jerusalem it might truly be said, “The time of figs was not yet.” But in the orchard to which Jesus came, one tree appeared to be in advance of all the others. It was already covered with leaves. It is the nature of the fig tree that before the leaves open, the growing fruit appears. Therefore this tree in full leaf gave promise of well-developed fruit. But its appearance was deceptive. Upon searching its branches, from the lowest bough to the topmost twig, Jesus found “nothing but leaves.” It was a mass of pretentious foliage, nothing more. {DA 581.3–4}

Mark’s statement was referring to the area where they walked, the “highlands” around Jerusalem. But the important fact is that she says, “except in certain localities”. Therefore, it was certainly already the time of figs in some areas of Israel, and the earliest time that I could find in all the literature is: nowhere in all Israel before the end of May.

It is also very interesting how she describes the flora at Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem:

It was on the first day of the week that Christ made His triumphal entry into Jerusalem. Multitudes who had flocked to see Him at Bethany now accompanied Him, eager to witness His reception. Many people were on their way to the city to keep the Passover, and these joined the multitude attending Jesus. All nature seemed to rejoice. The trees were clothed with verdure, and their blossoms shed a delicate fragrance on the air. A new life and joy animated the people. The hope of the new kingdom was again springing up. {DA 569.3}

This is a clear indication that we are already in the middle to end of May according to the altitude of Jerusalem, because the trees in Israel get their foliage a little earlier in April, and in the highlands even some time later, mid to late May. The only exception is the almond blossom, but that is already in February and thus excluded anyway.

In my opinion, the story of the withered fig tree gives an indication that a 13th month had been intercalated in the old year. Why? I’m not a fig tree expert, but as I said, I have learned in three and a half years of drought to assess whether a tree will dry up or not. But for a tree to dry up while it has full leaves and everything around it is blossoming, there must have been a drought before that. Many trees that die after major droughts develop excessive foliage, like being in panic. It is the last gasp of the tree before its death, but then the end comes very quickly. Jesus may have recognized that. I do not believe He would really have used His divine power to curse the tree that He created, not even as a parable for His lost people, but it is possible that this tree was just on the edge of its strength after a drought that was now indeed over, but had left its mark on this tree. Therefore, the tree might not have developed any fruit before the foliage. This drought could also have negatively influenced the barley harvest and could have necessitated a 13th month for ripe barley to be available for the feast of firstfruits.

Unfortunately, I’m no wine grower, but maybe someone can one time verify in which month a flourishing grapevine can be seen in the highlands around Jerusalem, as Ellen G. White writes in “Desire of Ages”:

Jesus and the disciples were on the way to Gethsemane, at the foot of Mount Olivet, a retired spot which He had often visited for meditation and prayer. The Saviour had been explaining to His disciples His mission to the world, and the spiritual relation to Him which they were to sustain. Now He illustrates the lesson. The moon is shining bright, and reveals to Him a flourishing grapevine. Drawing the attention of the disciples to it, He employs it as a symbol. {DA 674.2}

The grapevine is described as “flourishing”, which points to shoots of the vine that are already well-developed. Wouldn’t this be a nice opportunity for a joint investigation of Adventist brethren of the GC and Israel?

And yet once again our Lord tells us in the Bible when His crucifixion was, relative to the seasons:

Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh: So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors. (Matthew 24:32,33)

The little word “yet” makes clear that Jesus showed the disciples a fig tree that already had a tender branch that put forth leaves. This also happened in the crucifixion week when He said: “so you know that summer is near.” If this—as almost the entire Christian world accepts—had been said one week before April 25, not even the first third of spring would have passed, and there were still two months missing—or two-thirds of spring—till the early summer.

But if Jesus said that shortly before May 25, then it makes sense because there was indeed only one month left until the beginning of summer.

The many clues that we get from Scripture through Jesus’ descriptions of nature in His wonderful parables, which are in turn consistent with the descriptions of Ellen G. White, make it plain to us that Jesus suffered on the cross in the most beautiful phase of spring, when nature was in its greatest prosperity and growth. This shows once more in a marvelous way that the Savior had really come to His people to lead them to an exuberant summer of rich harvests, but His people did not recognize Him and crucified Him instead.

Hopefully this time we will recognize that the time has come. And as we shall see, the correct date of Jesus’ crucifixion and the newly found real biblical calendar is the key to the understanding of the last prophecies of the Bible.

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